440 V8 Swap: 1970 Plymouth Barracuda

Plymouth’s pony car, the Barracuda, was redesigned for 1970 and the public response was enthusiastic. At nearly 50,000 copies, sales were up by nearly half from the year before. But most people opted for some sort of V8 power, with just 5,500 of them built with a Slant-Six engine. The latter explains the seller’s car, but it’s left its meek and mild roots behind. With a 440 cubic inch V8 and 4-speed manual transmission, it’s now a muscle car that needs completing. Located in Poplar Bluff, Missouri, this ‘Cuda wannabe is available here on eBay where the bidding holds at an even $29,000.

As the story goes, this Barracuda spent most of its life in California before coming to Missouri. The seller’s buddy bought it out there several years ago and it somehow became the property/project of the seller. We’re told that the body numbers match the VIN, so it’s structurally original. The only piece that is not is the raised hood which was needed when the Slant Six was jettisoned in favor of the big-block 440. The floors are good, but the trunk pan either needs patching or replacing, and there is a bit of rust in one of the rear quarter panels.

There is no history on the 440 motor. We’re told it was fired up and sounded good before installation, but that part of the project stopped before things like hoses could be hooked up. The seller’s buddy says the 4-speed is good and the car has a brand-new clutch assembly. The rear end is 8 ¾ with open gears. No mention is made regarding enhancements to the suspension as the 440 is significantly heavier than the 225 would have been.

The (what may be) original blue paint is complimented by grey primer, so we assume everything is fine behind it there. The interior has been partially refreshed, but the front bucket seats need reupholstering while the rear is fine. The door panels have been removed and are awaiting some attention. A new dash and gauges are present, but whether anything is wired up is unknown.

When you come to get the Plymouth, don’t count on the present wheels and tires to come with it. The seller will put on some rollers for the trip to its next domicile. By the way, if the Barracuda had come with the 440 and 4-speed when new, it would have been one of just 340 built.


  1. Tooyoung4heyday Tooyoung4heyday Member

    Nice start to a fun project. Can’t wait to see all the whiners about the price. For a seemingly solid with little work needed e-body its priced just fine. Missed out on a California 70 barracuda with slant 6 about 5 years ago. They were asking $12,500. Was in black primer, needed a fender due to garage accident and needed interior redone. Needless to say someone got a good deal that day, car was at swap meet. This is a blank canvas that you can do with what you please, someone will get to enjoy it.

    Like 6
  2. Grant

    Slant six car with the deluxe dash? Was that swapped out to? Too bad about the six. I drove a Challenger 225/3sp once. I thought it was wonderful, reminded me of my 70 Duster with the same, just in a sexier package. The six was reliable and practical. Can the same be said of this? Some people never grow up no matter how much they age. Nothing worse than a geriatric body with all the poor response time and arthritic joints matched with the common sense of a 15 year old.

    Like 7
    • 370zpp 370zpp Member

      And that is why someone would buy this car; because it is “Reliable and practical” NOT.

      Yes, clearly some people never grow up. Apparently to you that is a bad thing.

      Like 13
    • Shuttle Guy

      Oh No! It has Big Tires in the back. They must think it’s still 1976!

      Like 4
  3. Johnny Demonic

    Plymouth looked at the Camaro and said “I like that. Think we will make the Barracuda look like it as well”

    Like 1
    • The Other Chris

      But better. (IMHO)

      Like 9
    • bone

      And Chevrolet looked at the Mustang and said , “lets make something that looks just like that” …..

      Like 2
      • Shadow

        And them Ford was first on race day and never ending production of the iconic Mustang since 1964 1/2 can’t say the same about dodge witch is owned by a foreign country and GM who took the tax payer bailout and has the lowest sales of the camaro let’s just face it ford lead and GM follows.

  4. David Sawdey

    Wish it was 1976 again. I love the fatties in the back,skinnys in the front look. Hell of a lot better than some of the abortions you see on the road today. Slammed to the ground,25 inch wheels and tires, Makes me want to vomit

    Like 9
  5. Big Bear 🇺🇸

    I remember some guys would pull the 225 or 318’for a big block. The problem would be .. K-frame for a 225.. Torsion bars are a 225 set up shocks also. Dash was change came with stock setup not the RT set up. If everything else is good on the bottom. Then lots of work lays ahead. As for the comment about growing up…. I am 64 I own a Jeep Grand Cherokee Hemi and love it! . Did some modifications to it and its very fast and loud. Life is short going to love driving it every chance I get. 🇺🇸🐻🇺🇸

    Like 2
  6. George Birth

    To each his own. I would not pay $29K for an unfinished Cuda,
    especially if the tires and wheels don’t come with it. Too many finished cars for that price that need no work to enjoy.

  7. K Gun Offense

    Somebody will buy this without a doubt. Just won’t be me. When you take the 6 cylinder and 318s out of these things for big blocks most times the suspension and rear end is left the same as it was born with. That creates too many problems and isn’t cheap or easy. Pay the money and buy a big block even if it’s not numbers matching. A lot easier to get it right and have a nice muscle car! That’s just me. They are getting harder and harder to find!

  8. PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

    SOLD for 29K.

    This project will get finished.

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